#AcausalIntrusion 🇺🇸 #SeepingEvocation

4 min read

Band: Acausal Intrusion
Title: Seeping Evocation
Label: I, Voidhanger Records
Release Date: 30 September 2022
Country: USA
Format Reviewed: Digital Download

On Seeping Evocation out 30 September on I, Voidhanger Records Acausal Intrusion follow up their debut record Nulitaswith a near-sixty-minute extreme metal voyage, that feeds death metal through a raging whirlwind of controlled carnage, sucking in and spewing out everything from black metal to doom to thrash to jazz and avantgarde. If this dark musical journey is a look into the void, it’s a void full of dark, churning clouds that don’t stay still for a moment.

There are several indicators — before even hearing the first notes of the record — that Acausal Intrusion’s new recordis going to be a strange, dark journey. For sure just the name the US duo of Nythroth (guitars, bass, keyboards, backing vocals) and Cave Ritual (drums, vocals) chose for themselves is mysterious and otherworldly (as is the name they chose for this their second album), add to this that Italy’s I, Voidhanger Records is the label they’re working with and you can expect something with a flavour of the avantgarde, that’s most likely pretty great too.

After the brief instrumental “Putrefaction” — an atmospheric intro, featuring synths that bring to mind 1950s sci-fi B-movie — the duo launch into “Formless Conjoining Chaos”, quickly showing what this record is all about. “Chaos” is certainly an apt word for the band to use. After an opening main guitar riff that seems to drag just behind the drum beat, the track escalates into a violent death metal storm that brings to mind the thunderous, demonic approach of Immolation. Menacing deep vocal growls make their first appearance and are a feature throughout the record, adding to the sense of doom and foreboding.

Like later-period Gorguts, this is a style of death metal that’s equally intricate as it is brutal. By the end of this first track proper (after the intro) the duo have already drowned the listener in over ten minutes of head-spinning, controlled chaos. Cave Ritual’s powerful, hammering drum work, occasionally takes a back seat to allow Nythroth’s nimble, atonal guitar arpeggios to introduce some haunting reprieve into these long, heavy-riff-laden passages.

This is a pattern that continues throughout the record, with Nythroth’s guitar lines and riffs evoking, at times, everything from Black Sabbath, to Opeth, to Sonic Youth, to Suffering Hour, but with everything fed through this unpredictable, cacophonous chaos generator, as Cave Ritual pile-drives the listener with a series of percussive batteries.

With most of the tracks ranging from six minutes to over ten minutes in length, there are plenty of notable passages to highlight. “Mnemonic Confabulation” features a slowed down, almost operatic section, where the guitars play a staccato line that almost sounds like violins and is reminiscent of Celtic Frost. “Ostensible Implanted Inheritance” meanwhile, presents one riff, later coming back to it, but seemingly slightly offset against the drums, for a very disorienting effect.

In between, “Nythra Kthunae Atazoth” (anytime you see “Kth”, you surely immediately think of H.P. Lovecraft) breaks things up neatly with a dual guitar instrumental. Cool and discordant, the listener gets some kind of respite before the final three tracks (barring a final, brief, instrumental closer) continue the attack.

The second to last track “Clairvoyant Quantums” might be the most concise representation of the album’s sound. The style is familiar at this point, but the duo still mix things up with a combination of chugging death metal, slicing guitar lines, black metal tremolo playing and a bit of doomy descending lines. Plus there’s a doom slowdown leading into a sparse, eerie, echoing guitar line, while the drums hang back in an understated rat-a-tat march.

For sure to a lot of people this music is going to sound unbearably all over the place. People without a taste for the avantgarde in their metal will probably not enjoy the ebb and flow of these tracks. Sometimes it’s hard to know what to hold onto, as the music can sometimes feel like an avalanche of riffs and rhythms falling down the mountain.

That’s certainly not to say though that this is any kind of riff salad. There’s a clear precision and control to the construction and execution of these tracks, it’s just definitely not for everyone. Yes, this is existential nightmare music. An apocalypse of innerspace in musical form. 8/10 Tom Osman

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